Public Plazas & Open Streets 

The Hort plants and maintains public plazas and open streets in neighborhoods in communities across New York City. We help local partners support, safeguard and enjoy these spaces through customized event and resource assistance.

Why we care

New York City needs more, and more accessible, public green spaces for people to enjoy the outdoors, especially in low-income communities.  Tree-lined streets, access to parks, planted seating and strolling areas should not only be in affluent neighborhoods. That is why we partner with NYC Department of Transportation and local community partners to make Public Plazas and Open Streets into beautiful, planted greenways for pedestrians of all ages to enjoy.

How We Work

The Hort creates and maintains green spaces on public plazas and open streets, ensuring all New Yorkers can enjoy the outdoors. On a daily basis, our team ensures that these public spaces, filled with vibrant plant life, are clean, welcoming, and accessible to anyone to enjoy as their community backyard.

As part of our longstanding partnership with the NYC Department of Transportation, we work closely with local community groups at our Open Streets and Plazas, setting up and maintaining planters filled with seasonal greenery. 

Our commitment to the community extends to our Workforce Development programming, where we often hire neighborhood residents who join our staff and develop their careers while maintaining their local green space. We invest in our crew members, fostering core skill development, horticultural knowledge and leadership capabilities.

  • This year we have maintained 21 Open Streets sites and 28 plazas. Our Open Streets sites span a total of 102 blocks.  
  • We currently maintain more than 300 planters on our Open Streets and plazas, where there were none just a few years ago.  
  • During our plant giveaways this year, we provided over 4,000 plants for members of our communities to take home and enjoy. 
  • We also helped to permit and support 98 programs on our Open Streets and Plazas.  

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